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Other/Mixed Benefit of low reps rungs in ladders?

Other strength modalities (e.g., Clubs), mixed strength modalities (e.g., combined kettlebell and barbell), other goals (flexibility)
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George Locke

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I've just started RoP, and I'm wondering about the rationale for ladder sets - in particular, I'm wondering about the training effect of rungs with few reps vis a vis "effective reps". The idea of "effective reps," as I understand it, is that you only get a muscular adaptation from reps that when you're ~3-5 reps from failure. Given that only some of the reps in a set are "effective", the term "junk volume" is used to describe those reps leading up to the "effective" ones. (I'm sure many are familiar with this stuff, I just like to define my terms for clarity.) I've been reading articles about the benefits of ladder sets, and many of them mention the fact that you're accumulating volume, but if a naive effective reps model holds, then rungs of 1-2 reps using a weight that's your 8RM are junk volume - creating some small fatigue but no training benefit.

So, I don't believe that this "naive model" is the whole story, but neither do I really understand why I'm including singles and doubles of a weight I can lift 5-8 times. So, I'm asking for your thoughts!

My own hunch at why the low rep rungs are effective is skill/nervous system: including singles at 5-8RM within your ladder sets helps establish the motor pattern and build the skill of the lift. If this guess is correct, than these early rungs are opportunities to really focus on quality movement. In other words, even if "effective reps" described how muscular adaptations occur, muscular adaptations are not the only adaptations that lead to increased strength.

Thanks for your input.
@George Locke, welcome to the StrongFirst forum.

Please don't forget that one of the virtues of the Rite of Passage is its simplicity - it's a proven pressing program that requires only a single weight. All programs need variety - if you want the singles and doubles on the ROP to be more effective in terms of hypertrophy, please reread the page in the book that discusses rest periods - shorten them to focus more on hypertrophy.

Singles are doubles are your easy reps, allowing you to accumulate higher total volume without failure or burning out.

1 - very easy
1, 2 - easy
1, 2, 3 - easy to medium
1, 2, 3, 4 - medium
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 - challenge - but without struggle, still some reps in the bank
Wash, rinse, and repeat:
1 - very easy
1, 2 - easy

Easy and medium reps in the training session are just as important as light and medium days in your weekly program.
If I'm not mistaken, that "junk volume" theory mostly refers to hypertrophy. However, the concept in ROP is that strength is a skill learned through practice, not only a matter of muscle size. Being so, when you are doing singles and doubles you are doing quality practice, even if not achieving much hypertrophy.
@Oscar, a lot of the downside in terms of hypertrophy can be minimized by shortening the rest periods., e.g., one can do ROP ladders by just standing there and doing 1-left, 1-right, 2-left, 2-right, 3-left, 3-right - as much as you can handle before putting the weight down, and using the same kind of swing-to-switch to get back to the first hand for the next rung of the ladder. I have certainly done this with the rungs of 1 and 2 in the past and it's been fine.

And I'll also mention that if someone is looking for a traditional, tough workout, simple doing alternating singles of the clean and press can be just that - it'll get most people huffing and puffing.

Thanks everyone for their thoughtful comments. Oscar's reply seems to me like the most substantive/direct answer to my question: "strength is a skill", and low rep sets sets offer "quality practice." This more or less confirms my guess. Steve's points about manipulating rest periods for hypertrophy goals are well taken.

Perhaps post tetanic potentiation or post activation potentiation are important. Some fatigue is beneficial and enables greater efforts to be made.
Invite all your friends to the party; when they get there, put them to work.
I've always viewed it as time to focus on quality, as @Oscar said. Defines SF's guiding principle, "strength is a skill"
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